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I live in Vermont where cell service around our property is spotty, at best. In many areas there is only text messaging available. We have 140 acres with lots of empty forested land around us. So I am looking for some user recommendations for a reliable tracking system that has excellent range and good battery life. Also one that is comfortable. I know lots of requirements. Appreciate any help with this people can offer. Thanks!
 

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If you are talking personal hand held GPS here is my experience:

I use a Garmin etrex. It does the job. Concerns with this (I think any GPS) are 1. Does not work well under a canopy of trees, may not work at all 2. It is not a compass, you need to be moving for correct compass direction 3. I use it only during hunting season and therefore forget some things about its usage

My preference is a compass and map. I actually carry two compasses. I frequently draw my own field maps and embellish them when I get home. I will go afield with compass and map and the GPS.
 

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I presume the OP is looking for info on GPS that helps locate lost dogs. I've never used one so I'm hoping that there will be others chiming in with personal experiences.
I have never had a dog go missing in the wilderness but I have ran across dead hunting dogs that I suspect were done in by evil humans rather than by nature.
 

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I presume the OP is looking for info on GPS that helps locate lost dogs. I've never used one so I'm hoping that there will be others chiming in with personal experiences.
I have never had a dog go missing in the wilderness but I have ran across dead hunting dogs that I suspect were done in by evil humans rather than by nature.
Guess you are right, comment on cell phone service threw me off.

One person I know is getting a Garmin Alpha 100 w/TT15 for his pointing dog who tends to roam.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Guess you are right, comment on cell phone service threw me off.

One person I know is getting a Garmin Alpha 100 w/TT15 for his pointing dog who tends to roam.
Thanks for the recommendation. But are you saying that being in the trees stops the thing from working? Given where Oscar will disappear into is the forest, that could be a significant drawback.

Any experience with the strength of cell signal to make a cellular based system work? Is there a minimum requirement like 2G, 3G, etc?

The help is appreciated.
 

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I can only comment on my hand held personal Garmin. When you are in a wooded area the canopy formed by the branches and leaves will cause loss of signal. When that happens I need to find a clear spot, also going to the top of a hill helps. Also, being in any kind of valley has caused loss of signal. I don't know if the same will happen with a dog's collar. There may be better technology that I don't know about.
 

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OscarsDad

Don't know what kind of dog you are running or what kind of hunting you are doing but IMHO the best thing you can do is use the ecollar to help you teach range. The woods are challenging, it is easy to lose sight of your dog. Also if the dog runs a deer he may be gone for a long time.

The pointing breeds I have seen all tend to run big or bigger, even the continental breeds except for the Spinone.
 

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Pointers use the type of collar you are referring to. The work over very long distances. The handler has a screen they can look at to locate the dog. Garmin makes them. https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/p/545353
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I can only comment on my hand held personal Garmin. When you are in a wooded area the canopy formed by the branches and leaves will cause loss of signal. When that happens I need to find a clear spot, also going to the top of a hill helps. Also, being in any kind of valley has caused loss of signal. I don't know if the same will happen with a dog's collar. There may be better technology that I don't know about.
Thanks! Seems like a better product is in need of inventing.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
OscarsDad

Don't know what kind of dog you are running or what kind of hunting you are doing but IMHO the best thing you can do is use the ecollar to help you teach range. The woods are challenging, it is easy to lose sight of your dog. Also if the dog runs a deer he may be gone for a long time.

The pointing breeds I have seen all tend to run big or bigger, even the continental breeds except for the Spinone.
Oscar is a 4 year old rescue golden from Turkey. When he gets something in his nose or sees movement he is off. We have resigned ourselves to keeping him on a 75 foot long lead so he can have some room to run. We have worked very hard to train him to return and most of the time (after thinking about it) he comes. But then there are times when instinct seems to overwhelm him and he bolts. It is a shame because I would love to allow him to run. We have a large property and absolutely nothing around us but we are quite afraid of losing him. I was hoping to use the GPS collar as a fail safe in case we could not get him to return. Not an easy proposition to find one that works well apparently, particularly given the lack of cell service in our region of Vermont.
 

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Discussion Starter #11

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I had an intact male that was an escape artist about 30 years ago, well before technology allowed for tracking. I quickly learned not to waste time calling for him and to just silently hike around listening for where dogs were barking because inevitably it would be him visiting.
 
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